Project: Cooking Hinges

I have four closets in the house that have bi-fold doors.  With the updating of the door hardware to nickel, I have a small issue with the hinges on these bi-fold doors.  They’re brass and I wasn’t able to find any drop-in nickel replacements for them.  Well actually, the hinges are painted over, which might be even worse than being brass.

It’s not a huge deal because you only see the hinges when the doors are open (that’s how bi-fold doors work).  But still, I want things to look good when they’re visible.  So, I think that having the hinges unfinished instead of painted will be an improvement, and I want them to at least look like they are nickel.  So, I’ll just spray paint them and hope that looks sufficient.

But first, I have to get the old paint off.  I heard from the Internet that this is a simple task involving heat and water.  I’m pretty sure it is, because I used the same technique when getting the paint off my closet shelving brackets.  But this is probably going to take a while to get off.  To accomplish this, I purchased a cheap $20 crock pot and the hinges will soak in water on high heat throughout the day.  The paint should be “fall off the bone” ready when I get back from work.

While prepping for that, after removing all the hardware from one door, I got to try out my new sawhorses.  With the doors propped up, I sanded down the edges of each part of the door and scuffed up the surface for the new paint.

If this soaking and spray painting trick doesn’t work out, a subsequent search with more appropriate keywords brought up some places to find my hinges.  Not knowing what the hinge is called was holding me back.  Apparently, the hinge is a “3-leaf non-mortise hinge” and is commonly used for shutters.  …And my doors, for whatever reason.  I would need 18 of the things, which would cost about $40.  That’s a bit more than the cost of the spray paint and crock pot that I bought, so maybe it won’t come to that.

And while I’m at it, the two single bi-fold doors on the linen closets need some adjustment.  The top anchor seems to have drifted a little, so the door presses up against the wall when closed.  In both cases, it’s actively damaging the wall, so I need to repair the wall and adjust the anchor.  Not sure why I lived with it like that as long as I did.

The soaking did the trick.  The paint just slid right off.  However… the painting of the first set of hinges resulted in some pretty shitty results.  Terrible-looking.  I know I said I wanted everything in my remodel to be quality, so I don’t even know why I cheaped out on this.  So, I guess I’m ordering new hinges for those doors, too.  And no more slow cooking brass.